The Tampa Lady Thunder inline hockey team needs help raising the remaining funds needed to get to State Wars United States Roller Hockey Championships in Detroit, MI, Aug. 4-6, 2017.
A total of just under $3,500 is needed to buy the remaining round trip airline tickets to Detroit and excess baggage fees for the team, along with a 15-passenger van rental during the tournament, as of Tues., June 20, 2017.
More than $36,000 has already been raised through the team’s AAU tax deductible donor drive made possible by its 501c3 IRS status. That money will support four AAU Level 3 Elite Player Development affiliated teams including the Tampa Lady Thunder, the FL Ghostriders based in Eustis, FL, and the AZ Ghostriders and Lady Ghostriders based in Phoenix, AZ.
The Tampa Lady Thunder was formed by sponsor and 20-year AAU Coach Brian Craven in early 2017 as a result of a history-making event last December in LA in which the AZ Lady Ghostriders, also sponsored by Craven, competed in the all-men American Inline Hockey League (AIHL) elite division.
The Lady Ghostriders made AAU American Inline Hockey League history on Dec. 10, 2016, by becoming the first women’s elite inline hockey team to compete in–and win–in the AIHL Men’s Division. Since the AIHL did not have a women’s division, AZ Lady Ghostriders Head Coach John Marr took the bold move of entering them in the AIHL men’s elite national league.
Impressed by the caliber and quality of the AZ Lady Ghostriders’ play, the AIHL team owners voted to form an AIHL Women’s Division that will start with the AIHL 2017-2018 regular season in December 2017.
AZ Lady Ghostriders have committed to joining the new AIHL Women’s Division and are helping other new AAU inline hockey clubs in Tampa and other cities recruit women’s elite teams.
To prepare for the new AIHL Women’s Division, and to help encourage other women’s teams, the Tampa Lady Thunder decided to attend State Wars in Detroit to compete in a new open Women’s Division that highlights elite women’s teams.
The AIHL presented the AZ Ghostriders with the AAU’s AIHL 2017 Organization of the Year Award in May as a result of the AZ Ghostriders’ leadership in helping create the new Women’s Division, and the club’s additional social mission to raise money for cancer research into the deadliest cancers most likely to affect Hockey Moms.
The Tampa Lady Thunder and FL and AZ Ghostriders teams have already raised more than $1,500 in donations to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance during tournaments they attended around the nation so far in 2017, for example.
“Competing in the top annual national championship tournament will help us celebrate and elevate women’s hockey and all the talented female athletes that make teams like the Tampa Lady Thunder possible,” said Craven. “We do everything we can to be self-supporting, but when we do need to ask for financial donations in special situations like this, the AZ Ghostriders can assure the donor they are 100 percent tax deductible.”
Additional tax-deductible donations are now being sought through a special outreach campaign. Donors who give $25 or more will receive thank-you gifts including a “Love Your Hockey Mom” t-shirt and car magnet.
To donate to the Tampa Lady Thunder fundraising drive:
Checks should be made payable to Brian Craven/Shadows Hockey Club.
Brian Craven/Tampa Lady Thunder
1235 Palmetto Circle
Eustis, FL 32726